OxyContin Misuse Can Lead to Serious Complications
There are certain risks that should be discussed between doctor and patient before a prescription is written for OxyContin. This opioid prescription medication is intended for moderate to serious pain that is chronic in nature. The most important thing to know is that OxyContin contains oxycodone, a Schedule II Controlled Substance classified for its medical use and high abuse potential.
It's important to follow doctor's orders and the prescription label to ensure safe use of all opioids. The label contains essential information about OxyContin side effects, allergic reactions, possible food and substance interactions, dependence, overdose and withdrawal.
Chronic pain management can be difficult without opioids such as OxyContin, but the drug has become known just as much for its involvement in cases of abuse, addiction, relapse, overdose and related crimes. OxyContin can be taken safely and patients rarely set out to become addicted to it. This can happen if long-term use leads to physical and/or psychological dependence. If patients take more than they're supposed to, opioid addiction can develop quickly and progress.
Withdrawal, Fatal Respiratory Depression and Allergic Reaction Are Possible
OxyContin withdrawal sets in when use is stopped abruptly or when patients try to wean themselves unsuccessfully. It can be so severe that physical and psychological discomfort leads to relapse. Opioid withdrawal is notoriously difficult to manage without help and can include symptoms of strong cravings, nausea, vomiting, severe agitation, restlessness and muscle and bone pain.
Other complications are possible for people who take OxyContin for pain or for those who take it recreationally. Opioids depress the central nervous system (CNS) and can severely hamper respiration and other important functions if they're mixed with other CNS depressants. This can occur among patients who take too much and those who mix opioids with other CNS depressants. These include alcohol, barbiturates, sedatives, hypnotics and other narcotics.
There are many possible side effects of OxyContin but many dissipate over time. Allergic reaction is another possible complication to watch for when taking this medication. Symptoms can include rash, itching, hives, dizziness, trouble breathing and swelling of the face, lips, tongue or throat.
Effective Use of OxyContin Requires Adherence to Prescription Label
OxyContin is available in tablet form, in a controlled-release formula that delivers medication every 12 hours. It is meant to be taken orally in its whole form. People who crush, chew, snort or inject this medication risk a fatal opioid overdose. Higher doses of OxyContin are meant only for people already tolerant to opioids. Otherwise, a fatal overdose is possible.
It's very important that people take OxyContin exactly as prescribed. Any kind of misuse can lead to complications that could prove very serious.